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Loose Symphony

Next week I return to Tempe, where two years ago the brilliant Gary Hill hosted me in a residency featuring the amazing Liz Buck playing my Concertino with the Arizona State University Chamber Players and Gary conducting Avenue X with the ASU Wind Symphony. This time I work with my friend, the brilliant Stuart Sims, as he conducts Symphony No. 1, My Hands Are a City. This in itself would be terrific, as Stuart’s interpretive skills are unparalleled, but the coolest part is that he performs the work as his doctoral lecture recital. Titled “The 21st Century Symphony”. That’s definitely a first for me. I saw a friend perform a Berio Sequenza as her lecture recital once, but he was already dead and couldn’t attend. So there, Luciano.

Stu is one of those guys who make you feel lazy and dull. No one thinks more about, well, everything, than this guy. When he was conducting at CSU Stanislaus, he organized a Chunk performance where he provided not only the most extensive program notes ever to be written about a wind ensemble concert based on rock/funk music, but also rented an authentic Hammond B3 organ for the concert. Then he cajoled Maestro Reynolds to shake his money-maker in a Chunk performance at USC. I’m not exactly sure how Stuart managed that, but the result was hot. And unsurprisingly fun to watch.

The weblog/podcasts he does with Dustin Sosieth on The Loose Filter Project are consistently spot-on, and as a Loose Filter fan I’m psyched that we’ll be preparing something for the site while I’m there. I’ll take some supplements before we start taping so I can keep up.

While at ASU I’ll meet with Gary’s conducting students, and it looks like I’ll also be guest lecturer for the ASU Honors College. I’ll also see the composition students of my amazing longtime friend Roshanne Etezady (we were Tanglewood classmates 20 years ago). It’s worked out to be an added bonus that I get to catch up with Roshanne, who, besides being a beautiful composer, is famous for simply being awesome.

Stuart performs the work with the ASU Wind Symphony twice on 2/4, so log on to your Facebook account and check out the official event invite.

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